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Japanese games that star well-functioning adults (bonus points if the game is "anime")

Oct 28, 2017
5,991
#1
Fire Emblem 4 is one of my favorite games for this reason. The first half of the game stars not a plucky young teenager, but a fully capable adult. Sigurd fulfills the stereotype of many Fire Emblem heroes in that he is of noble lineage, has blue hair, wields a sword, and acts in a stereotypically heroic manner, but he differs from his peers in that he is already in his mid-to-late 20's, which shows in that he is an already promoted unit on horseback by the time the game begins.



This seems to be a rarity in Japanese games, and even in the case that we do get an adult, they are usually in their early 20's or so. Seeing Sigurd with his fully capable, already-trained self, who thought and acted like a rational adult and had down-to-earth relationships with the people around him, was very refreshing, especially in a series as vanilla as Fire Emblem.

What are some other Japanese games that star fully functioning adults? Again, bonus points for anime games, or JRPGs.
 
Mar 22, 2019
245
#3
Yuri Lowell from Vesperia is an adult wasn't he? I'd count him.

Also Kazuma Kiryu from Yakuza probably counts too.
 
Nov 21, 2017
921
#6
Do they also have to look the part? How about 30 year old that looks like no different from those teen characters albeit with longer legs?
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,508
#10
Persona 2: Eternal Punishment has a cast of character who all have stable jobs. They are young adults (early to mid twenties), but adults nonetheless.
 
May 22, 2018
2,516
#14
Ace Attorney. Phoenix is a pretty normal guy.

Also, Cyrus, H'aanit, and Olberic from Octopath should count as well.

Does Mario count?
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,508
#15
I don't know if it counts, as the face of the game fits into the optimistic youth who must grow into a hero schtick, but the majority of Brigandine's protagonists are adults (and you can choose which protagonist you play through the game as).

Nier also has an old dude as the protagonist (in the Western release, at least).
 
Dec 1, 2017
2,599
#16
I want to say Makai Kingdom, but Idk if I can classify Zetta as a functional adult. He's a freakin book for the majority of the game.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,352
New Jersey
#19
Well functioning? I always liked Grandia 3's Miranda. She was a mom who was an actual person, not a stereotype of a mom, very strong and capable but still cared about her son. That was clearly the best thing about the game.
 
OP
OP
SolVanderlyn
Oct 28, 2017
5,991
#20
Yuri Lowell from Vesperia is an adult wasn't he? I'd count him.
Ehhh, barely. He's 21 and acts more mature than the kids in the group, but he's still really young.
Lost Odyssey is a great example. The main character is old enough that he has a grown adult child and grandchildren.
Probably the most extreme example, as he's literally immortal and thousands of years old, lol.
Persona 2: Eternal Punishment has a cast of character who all have stable jobs. They are young adults, but adults nonetheless.
Oh yeah, I loved this game for this reason. Shame it's the only Persona game not starring high school students (not that that's bad, but it would be nice to see a cast like this again)
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,269
Jordan
#21
What are some other Japanese games that star fully functioning adults? Again, bonus points for anime games, or JRPGs.
Yakuza series

Lost Odyssey

Hotel Dusk (&__&) - this is strongly recommended.

The Last Window (sequel to Hotel Dusk)

Metal Gear Solid series

I prefer coming of age stories though, to be honest.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,303
#22
Yuri Lowell from Vesperia is an adult wasn't he? I'd count him.

Also Kazuma Kiryu from Yakuza probably counts too.
Yeah, Yuri is 21 (22 by the end of the game). It was seen as a revelation at the time for the Tales series because the protags were always in their teens.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,799
#23
In Octopath Traveler, only one of the eight protagonists is a teenager, which was highly refreshing. Ophilia is 20, Alfyn is 21, Therion is 22, Primrose is 23, H'aanit is 26, Cyrus 30, and Olberic 35.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,035
#26
Elma from Xenoblade Chronicles X. She is a competent 30 something year old woman. She’s a breath of fresh air compared to most other protagonists.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,508
#32
“Well functioning”

No one in Nier or Persona is well functioning.
Part of being a well functioning adult is obfuscating how fucked up you are and how much it hurts on the inside. Most of the characters in Persona do that well enough.

Basically, don't drink at the office (often) and you are functioning well.

I thought of another great JRPG series for this, OP. Shadow Hearts. Nearly every game in the entire series (including the very underrated Koudelka) features an adult cast of characters.
 
Last edited:
Nov 9, 2017
92
#34
One of my favorite things about Xenoblade X was how the vast majority of the cast were adults and how the topics of conversation fit that higher average age range.

For the core cast, you have:
Elma 29
Lao 31
Doug 30
Irina 27
Gwin 24

And of the recruitable characters you have:
Alexa 21
Boze 54
Frye 30
Phog 24
Hope 24
HB 28
Murderess 26
Nagi 57
Yelv 22

The only characters younger than 20 are:
Mia 19
Celica 18
Lin 13

Was kind of refreshing seeing JRPG characters chat about basic co-worker small talk topics like kids, alcohol, cars, sports, etc. I don't know about well-functioning since there's a lot of alcoholism and depression going on in there but uh... Those are pretty adult problems to have at least?
 
Oct 29, 2017
2,644
#45
I think very few games feature "well functioning" adults in general lol. That would be boring at least in the traditional sense.

That said, Claire Redfield from Resident Evil is my vote.
 
Jan 11, 2018
2,913
#46


Stocke from Radiant Historian is a seasoned military man who is above 18 and consistently makes rational down to earth decisions instead of relying on "lol mAh bodY moVEd oN it's Own. pOWer Of FRiENDship yaLl
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,285
#47
Milla Maxwell

She's 20 during Tales of Xillia 1, and while part of it is being raised as a God substitute, she's probably the most stable anime JRPG protagonist, both mentally and emotionally. No kind of revelation can shake or faze her, and she has a single minded dedication to follow through with what she thinks is right, while also being flexible in understanding that "righteousness" is relative.